One Saturday night, near the end of September, we all gathered together at Bunker’s Peanut Bar to celebrate the release of Tommy Fidgen’s new recording. Some came to drink, some to worship and others to trip out. Some didn’t come at all.
Scott Brown, Carlo Spinazzola and Matt Foulds were there, playing along, Scott’s bass lines once again intertwined with Fidgen’s songs, Matt solid on the kit and Carlo winding out in the slide space around the songs. These were new songs. Songs from Human By Trade and songs written too late to be cap-tured by his old band Sunfish. Brilliant songs, each in its own right but…
Like it or not, right or wrong, Sunfish still looms over Tommy Fidgen. There was no closure when that band broke up or quit playing together or whatever happened.
On this night, Mike Morrison sat in with Tommy and Scott on the unrecorded Sunfish classic “Ashes In The Rearview”. Nigel at the soundboard was freaked ’cause finally, it was just like before.
Other than that, however, Tommy didn’t take requests. I kept yellin’ for “These Days” or “A Fish Story”, songs that would’ve fit comfortably within the musical confines of the evening. Someone in the crowd agreed, commenting that if only he’d sing one of those old songs that we all miss so much, it’d put things right over the edge. But Tommy didn’t even wanna do a second set. We weren’t asking him to turn water into wine.
That’s not to say that this evening was a bust. It was, in fact, a brilliant night. The bar was jam packed, more people than I can ever remember seeing in there. The band was smokin’. Matt and Carlo and Scott were right on with these new tunes and the songs themselves are among the best. Tommy is an exceptional songwriter. His new songs have been going around and around and around and around in my head ever since I first heard them. “Be sure to put the kettle on, conversation seems to drag along, throat so dry I can’t spit, if you think about it take a breath for me.” Giddyup, we’re goin to hell, in a handbag…
B-I-N-G-O, everything’s prohib-ited.”